Steve Kerr reveals why there will never be another Michael Jordan-like flu game
To this day, Michael Jordan’s heroic performance in the “Flu Game” stands as one of the most iconic displays of sheer physical and mental fortitude in all of basketball. But as far as his former Chicago Bulls teammate and Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr is concerned, instances like that will no longer happen in today’s game.
In a recent appearance on the Runnin’ Plays podcast, the Warriors’ top tactician said the league now has a stricter policy when it comes to players’ medical concerns.
“We’re not taking that chance today,” Steve Kerr said. “I guarantee you that. If that happened with Steph, or Klay, or any of our players, no way we’re dealing with that.”
Michael Jordan’s predicament in Game 5 of the 1997 NBA Finals remains fresh in Kerr’s memory 23 years later. The night before the game, His Airness dealt with a terrible case of food poisoning after ordering a pizza from a local parlor in Utah.
“He (Jordan) had an IV at the shoot-around,” the Warriors coach recalled. “We were at a high school in Park City, 45 minutes outside of Salt Lake, for that Finals game, and … he could barely move.”
Players of this generation would immediately be listed as unavailable after such an incident, but Jordan was reportedly adamant to still play. What followed next was one of the most breathtaking displays in basketball lore.
A visibly weakened Jordan torched the Utah Jazz for 38 points, helping the Bulls clinch a 3-2 advantage in the series. Chicago went on to close out the series in the ensuing game on their way to back-to-back titles.
Over the years, we’ve seen players overcome unfavorable odds to put up amazing performances. However, none of those ever come close to what Jordan accomplished during that legendary moment.